E–book (Curzon Imperial Statesman)

  • Paperback
  • 704
  • Curzon Imperial Statesman
  • David Gilmour
  • English
  • 02 October 2020
  • 9780374530242

David Gilmour ´ 2 Summary

Characters Curzon Imperial Statesman David Gilmour ´ 2 Summary Free download · Curzon Imperial Statesman 102 Elegant biography a fast moving entertaining and finely written story Simon Schama The New YorkerGeorge Nathaniel Curzon's controversial life in public service stretched from the high noon of his country's empire to the traumatized years following World War I As viceroy of India under ueen Victoria and foreign secretary under King George V the obsessive Lord Curzon left his Curzon is one of those typically British biographies of dead political figures Such biographies tend to go into great detail not just about the protagonist but about long forgotten political issues fought among long forgotten men If you are interested in the protagonist or the period this can be excellent as long as the writing is good and Gilmour s is good But if you re looking for an objectively thrilling read you should stay awayBefore I read this book I only knew vaguely of George Curzon primarily for the so called Curzon Line which is not even mentioned in this very long book The Curzon Line was the line proposed by Curzon after World War I as the border between Bolshevik Russia and newly reconstituted Poland But Curzon did a lot than draw borders during his workaholic life He is today regarded when remembered as a man of tremendous early promise and gifts undermined by perceived and real defects of personality who never reached the heights he expected Curzon among other offices served as a highly successful Viceroy of India 1899 1905 and was expected to be Prime Minister but never wasGilmour explores all of these aspects of Curzon with a gimlet eye but with a fundamentally positive outlook on his subject Apparently in the mid twentieth century Curzon s reputation suffered greatly at the hands of biased biographies and in large part Gilmour s book seems to be an effort to rehabilitate Curzon while remaining realistic about his shortcomingsLike Winston Churchill but so Curzon was fundamentally an unreconstructed Victorian He lived from 1859 to 1925 but never really adapted to the new shifting realities of British domestic policies During his career from my limited understanding leading British political opinion started to shift against Empire Not that anyone at that time advocated ending the Empire but the old Kipling esue White Man s Burden was no longer universally accepted and flexible calculating men shifted and calibrated their positions in light of the need to reduce the Empire s commitments especially after World War I Curzon was incapable of such fluidity he was extremely knowledgeable and extremely used to being a leading debater on all issues about which he cared but he tended to plow straight ahead in predictable ways refusing to trim his position and rejecting political intrigue This did not always serve him well and he was further harmed by a complete inability to appreciate the uses of press manipulationCurzon was born on the same estate his family had owned for than 700 years He did not regard this wholly as showing virtue as he said No family could have remained in possession of the same estate since the twelfth century had they manifested the very slightest energy or courage And the family s motto Let Curzon hold what Curzon held backs this up Curzon himself though showed nothing but energy and courageHe followed a typical course of the British aristocracy of the Victorian age Eton followed by Oxford Balliol followed immediately by government service Unlike most British aristocrats however he was fantastically well traveled and regarded from a young age as the country s leading expert on the entire East While a young man he traveled extensively throughout the Middle East Persia Mesopotamia Central Asia Afghanistan Russia Korea China Japan Among other achievements he discovered one source of the Oxus River an ice cave in the Wakhjir Pass near the Chinese border apparently Then he wrote numerous ponderous but very highly regarded books on the areas in which he traveled Not for Curzon limiting himself to a Grand Tour of Europe in fact he visited Europe little and Ireland where he was a peer not at allCurzon s public career began in 1886 for fifteen years he served in Parliament and in a variety of foreign policy related government offices while simultaneously traveling and writing as outlined above What struck me most was Curzon s dealing through his entire adult life with notable physical disabilities while at the same time working hours that would have killed most men As a teenager he suffered a back injury that reuired freuent wearing of a metal body cage to prevent collapse giving him a reputation for stiffness and exacerbating his reputation for being pompous He suffered from chronic insomnia neuritis and phlebitis each of which kept him sick in bed for weeks if not months every year Yet year after year he ground on incapable of doing anything but working and working at the very highest level of outputCurzon was convinced that all great men were detail men from Alexander the Great to Wellington to himself He refused to delegate even the most trivial of matters and spent inordinate time while Viceroy doing tasks like re writing subordinates memoranda to fix their grammar and phrasing Doubtless much of this was not necessary Wellington as Curzon knew was a detail man in planning war not in pedantry But Curzon s nature was as he said if you wanted a thing done a particular war the only plan was to do it yourself The truth probably lies somewhere in between but closer to Curzon The idea that a truly great person can be primarily a delegator is a myth So for example Steve Jobs was a detail person and a great businessperson Jack Welch was a delegator and a grossly overrated man All or nearly all great entrepreneurs and for that matter all great leaders in any context are workaholic detail people I can t think of a single exception for example Julius Caesar was criticized for his habit of dictating business correspondence during social dinners Such people may not be great company or great family men but they get things doneFrom 1899 to 1905 Curzon was Viceroy of India in which role he was immensely successful and widely respected if not always agreed with by both native Indians and British He demanded that criminal justice be eually applied which was far from a universal British position He took a particular interest in restoration of Indian historical monuments such as the Taj Mahal in fact Nehru not exactly a fan of British India remarked After every other Viceroy has been forgotten Curzon will be remembered because he restored all that was beautiful in India Ultimately Curzon was driven out as Viceroy in the middle of his second five year term by the intrigues of the odious and largely incompetent Herbert Kitchener then Commander In Chief in India with whom Curzon clashed on the degree of power to be accorded to Kitchener All this was played out in the British papers which Kitchener played to the extent that Curzon was widely viewed as defective again not helped by Curzon s habit of acting superior and his inability to conduct his own press manipulationUpon return to England Curzon did not receive the honors traditionally accorded to any Viceroy much less a successful Viceroy This was because of various shifting political sands and Curzon s inability to navigate them partially bad luck and partially bad management Although he joined the House of Lords for nearly ten years he did little of political impact In 1915 however he joined Asuith s government serving under him then Lloyd George and Bonar Law during and after the war in a variety of foreign policy cabinet positions in freuent conflict with Churchill over matters such as the Dardanelles and British policy in Mesopotamia In 1923 despite the widespread assumption that he would become Prime Minister upon Law s resignation Arthur Balfour was instead appointed effectively ending Curzon s career He died in 1925The book spends a good amount of time on Curzon s personal life which enlivens the book considerably Not that Curzon s personal life was lively in the sense of pleasant it was up and down with lots of tragedy and conflict Gilmour only touches on it in lightly but Curzon s children were a gruesome disappointment although he contributed to his own bad relations with them He had three daughters all of whom were highly defective in the spectacular way of the declining British aristocracy after 1930 Two of them were involved with and one married Oswald Mosley the British fascist leader And the rest of their lives were consumed with various dubious behavior that would have horrified CurzonLike all good biographies this gives a flavor of the times and like all good biographies in combination with other knowledge this gives the reader the ability to analyze other situations better While aristocrats like Curzon are gone self assured highly knowledgeable men and women keenly interested in public service as they see it are still around though fewer than there used to be This book helps the reader understand them the relations they had with others and how they affected their times and then to use that information to assist in understanding the world of today and tomorrow

Characters Curzon Imperial StatesmanCurzon Imperial Statesman

Characters Curzon Imperial Statesman David Gilmour ´ 2 Summary Free download · Curzon Imperial Statesman 102 S a fervent believer in British imperialism who spent his life proving he was fit for the task Often seen as arrogant and tempestuous he was loathed as much as he was adored his work disparaged as much as it was admired In Gilmour's well rounded appraisal Curzon is seen as a complex tragic figure a gifted leader who saw his imperial world overshadowed at the dawn of democrac I liked George Curzon and he didn t have it easy despite being born with a silver spoon in his mouth and expectations of greatness He was the victim of an appalling conspiracy by colleagues and friends in high office and he left his India position without the acclaim that was due to him I read this book slowly as I was reluctant to let him go as I liked him so much He stood head and shoulders over those around him and they took from him the positions he would have excelled in When he did get a chance to excel he did A wonderful biography of a man I liked a lot

Characters ↠ PDF, DOC, TXT, eBook or Kindle ePUB free ´ David Gilmour

Characters Curzon Imperial Statesman David Gilmour ´ 2 Summary Free download · Curzon Imperial Statesman 102 Unmistakable mark on the era David Gilmour's award winning book is a brilliant assessment of Curzon's character and achievements offering a richly dramatic account of the infamous long vendettas the turbulent friendships and the passionate risky love affairs that complicated and enriched his lifeBorn into the ruling class of what was then the world's greatest power Curzon wa Gilmour has a difficult task Curzon was a paragon of the empire man of the 19th century British world It meant that he felt compelled to a life of state service and while in India conscientiously did things that were for the 19th century progressively minded married to and supported by an American heiress and father of daughters who were social stars one of them marrying Oswald Mosley the others orbiting around him like moths For a modern reader this is also a path that in retrospect is bigoted backwards imperial and behind many of the disastrous policies Britain pursued with the people it ruled Curzon like his relative Kipling had the experience of living through the height of the world for which he had been formed and then seeing it crash on WWI and spiral into unstable democracies and moves to decolonize snatching the final levels of promotion out of his grasp Men on the Edge vendettas the turbulent friendships and the passionate risky love affairs that complicated and enriched his lifeBorn into the ruling class of what was then the world's greatest power Curzon wa Gilmour has a difficult task Curzon was a paragon of the empire man of the 19th century British world It meant that he felt compelled to a life of state service and while in India conscientiously did things that were for the 19th century progressively minded married to and supported by an American heiress and father of daughters who were social stars one of them marrying Oswald Mosley the others orbiting around him like moths For a modern reader this is also a path that in retrospect is bigoted backwards imperial and behind many of the disastrous policies Britain pursued with the people it ruled Curzon like his relative Kipling had the experience of living through the height of the world for which he had been formed and then seeing it crash on WWI and spiral into unstable democracies and moves to decolonize snatching the final levels of promotion out of his grasp